"The Riverside Meet", Weekly Gwinnett Thursday Night Meet.

There might be handful of people or less that might be able to trace weekly Thursday night Gwinnett Meet to its roots, before it started at or got known as "Riverside Meet."


It was a simple idea of holding a private public meet, which would only be known among people invited, and their friends. As in everyone knew somebody or mostly everybody, having a meet where everyone could easily strike a conversation, feel right among friends, and have a great time. It was everyone's meet. It also kept the ricers out. People invited people who were responsible, and mature. At the end of the meet no one wanted to be the person who invited the idiot who crashed the meet. You get the idea.


First 3 meets were actually held at the Parking lot of Carmike Theater in Snellville, and were bi-weekly. First meet only had about 8 cars show up at 9:00pm on bone crackling chilly night of Thursday in winter 2006 (sorry don't remember the exact date after years). These 8 cars came front every directions, few drove a hour out. Second meet, we had about 15 cars show up, and all had a great time. For the third one, we really put some effort in and got good bit of invites out to people. Third Meet started at 9:00pm and by 9:30 we already had 50+ cars. People brought out their mini bikes, R/C cars, and had a great time. Well, where there are loud cars, Gwinnett PD isn't far behind. There were few "smart" souls who decided, not to stop at "Stop Sign", not to give pedestrian first way, and go pedal to the metal through gears on a street right in front of the meet. It' being a Public lot and acts becoming a hazard, Gwinnett PD didn't waste any time turning on the blue lights & show everyone their way home. That was it for this meet, no another meet was to be scheduled until the talk "Gwinnett Thursday Meet" about it cooled down a little.


On comes the "Riverside Meet" on a Thursday after a month. Learning from the previous meet, this was a tightly knit weekly meet among friends. From Mid 2006 to early 2008 it was a well kept secret (well not really, but people still had no clue where this meet was being held after 2 years, after hearing so much about it). During that time it was composed of only about 30-40 cars of friends who had been coming back every week. Riverside Meet had a reputation of no nonsense, no immaturity, and chill meet. It grew, and the first 100+ cars turn out was summer of 2008. Each row of the meet was organized by Make & Model of the car. 1st row all Honda, 2nd all Nissan, 3rd row Toyota, and so on. Some loved the idea and some hated it, but it was dropped after 2 meets. For all of 2008 Riverside Meet only got bigger and bigger. To keep the meet in check we raised funds to hire Gwinnett PD to keep everyone in check, and it worked. Every week we had over 200 cars, for months not a single incident or act of immaturity. When the idiots did struck they got served by Giwnnett's finest, and it laid a example on everyone else at meet.


Riverside Meet downfall came in mid 2009 when there were some disagreements among original organizers and local automotive forums on the meet authority. Differences got worked out, but meet was left as an open meet, and under no supervision. The meet still went on and attracted hundreds weekly, but it came with price...things that were prohibited before and were not encouraged. People started racing, drifting, and doing burn outs within the parking lot. Business that previously welcomed the people at meet, now wanted it shut down. From 2009-2010 the meet got shut down and resumed few times like a dying car trying to limp few more miles, but the final nail in the tire came in May, 2011 when the property owner said "enough is enough." The immaturity had gone out of hands and for everyone's safety the plugged was pulled from it at it's Riverside location. One of the biggest weekly meets in Georgia that attracted 100's every week from as far as Alabama and Augusta, came to an end. Which many saw coming, and left many looking do something on Thursday nights.


Well it didn't stay at rest for long, IT'S BACK, and BETTER. While the meet was being shut down at Riverside, we were hard at work reviving it and giving it the reputation that smoked all other meets that tried to accomplished what it did. First meet was held in the front parking lot of "Wild Bill" in Duluth, GA with a turn out of over 550 Cars. It brought out cars like Widebody & Turbo NSX's, to Porsche's, Custom/Restored 54 Chevy Trucks, show cars of all type (Pictures can be found here: http://www.facebook.com/home.php?sk=group_123697071015663). Sure it may take time to adjust to the new location, but "Weekly Gwinnett Thursday Meets or Riverside Meet" has a new home with the original simple idea it started with being, "Everyone's Meet". See you there...

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Comment by Michael Thies on October 10, 2013 at 12:01pm

Yes, Wild Bill's from now on.  :-)

Comment by Miguel Caparros on May 25, 2011 at 5:59am
Thanks Sunny, I have to imagine you are now talking about the meet at Wild Bills on Thursday night?


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